For Dad

Dad playing with babyDads and other important men like grandfathers and uncles can make significant contributions to a child’s development. When fathers with a positive attitude are affectionate, spend time with their children and are involved in their children’s daily activities, their children have fewer behavioral problems, perform better in school, are more sociable and have better self-esteem. Some things you can do include:

Define your role. There are plenty of opportunities for hands-on dads as playmates, diaper changers, bathers and soothers. The key is to play, touch and talk with a baby as much as possible.

Create your own rituals. Turn activities like running weekend errands into regular routines for father and child. Although they may seem mundane, simply having consistent one-on-one time will make the activity special.

Take on responsibilities. A dad can pick up his child from child care, help him get dressed in the morning, prepare his meals and take him to the doctor. Directly caring for a child will make dads feel good about themselves and their fathering skills.

Try to balance work and family. While being involved is critical, be careful not to overdo it. Dads should have some time for themselves so that they can refuel and have something to offer their child.

Dad working while holding baby

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